Doing it right: How a journal helped Ed Yong get a better story
For this story, I sent Nature paper to Henrich for comment. He said he had paper showing same thing out in 2wks (1/3) http://www.nature.com/news/bigger-groups-mean-complex-cultures-1.14158
Yong, for those few of you unfamiliar, is the prolific blogger and longform science journalist who brings the world such stories as “These Sea Slugs Penetrate Each Other In The Head During Sex.” His tweets caught my attention, and before I could find the time to ask him for details for a potential Embargo Watch post, he’d sent me this narrative, which I agree is a nice story:
I thought this was a nice story.
I got assigned by Nature to cover this paper on cultural evolution. As part of that, I contacted Joe Henrich, who works in the field, for an outside comment. We chat on the phone and he lets slip that he has his own paper, coming out in a couple of weeks time in Proc Roy Soc B, which says fundamentally the same thing.
Henrich called the Royal Society, pushing them to expedite the publication. They agreed.
Henrich told me with plenty of time so that I could cover both papers in the same story.
Usually, from experience, the scientist would refuse to comment about the paper for some fear of infringing on their own publication, or the journal wouldn’t cooperate in shifting the publication date, or maybe the journalist might not bother covering both. But in this case, everyone was flexible, I think the story’s much better for it.